Paddy McLaughlin 'excited for the future' as former Cliftonville boss takes up Derry City coaching role
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And the former Candystripes defender insists it was simply too good an opportunity to turn down at this stage in his career.
After taking his first training session with the club alongside manager and good friend Ruaidhri Higgins this week, McLaughlin said he’s excited about working with such a talented squad.
"I felt I couldn’t turn it down because I’m excited about the future and the way the club is going,” said McLaughlin. “Especially after taking my first training session, it’s clear the talent in the squad is unbelievable and I can't wait to get working with them on a regular basis.”
Higgins made it clear that he would take the time needed to get the right man in after the departure of Alan Reynolds, and there is no doubting that this will be seen as a fantastic appointment for the club.
The 43-year old enjoyed eight seasons at the Brandywell as a player between 1997 and 2005; making 214 appearances.
“It was a no-brainer for me in terms of coming back to Derry City but the difficult part was going to tell the Cliftonville players on Monday night,” continued McLaughlin.
“I was kind of dreading that after four good years there but once it was done I was able to look forward to this new challenge. It could probably have happened before now, but I couldn’t turn it down when this opportunity arose.
“Derry City was my club as a supporter growing up, and then as a player. It’s the chance to be part of something here over the next few years and also the opportunity to work alongside Ruaidhri.
“We’ve been friends for a long time and it would be brilliant if we’re able to build on the recent success at the club. There is a lot of hard work involved in success- in football and in life generally. It will be up to us, the staff and the players to keep improving to reach and maintain those levels.
“Hopefully there will be exciting times ahead over the next few seasons and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Higgins said he was delighted to welcome Paddy back to the club where he has already made a big impression.
“He has great history here and was part of the 2002 cup winning team. It’s his hometown club and I’m really pleased to have him here. Paddy brings a vast amount of experience and quality and he did a fantastic job at Cliftonville.”
“He’ll bring so much to the players and he gives a real balance to our staff as a group. I’m really looking forward to working with him on a daily basis.”
McLaughlin departs for Cork City with the team today for his first assignment as assistant boss and Higgins will be hoping his arrival has the desired effect as City look to put an end to a three match winless run.